In the last decade, Gaura ‘The Bride’ has skyrocketed to popularity among gardeners.A graceful, hazy plant with airy spikes of white, star-shaped flowers with long anthers like daddy long-legs, held on slender stems from May to September. RHS AGM
I love the drama of big spiky plants. The most elaborately formed flowers belong to Eryngium giganteum 'Miss Willmott’s Ghost'. As the summer moves to its later stages, the whole plant reaches its peak in a blaze of silver. The plant will reward you with a glamorous late-summer display.
Achillea filipendulina ‘Cloth of Gold’ is an easy to grow plant which tolerates a fair amount of neglect which makes it a very versatile plant for use in many situations. It does require full sun for best flower production, but this is little to ask for such a grand reward.
P. alpina has more upright flowers than other species of Pulsatilla, which generally has drooping flowers. The white flowers are produced very early, often opening while still under snow cover, flowers are followed by fluffy seed-heads.
With its wonderfully large blooms, 'Silver Cup' is a delightful variety bedecked with glistening pale pink flowers. The pink-flowered counterpart of the white 'Silver Cup'. Lavatera makes a beautiful bushy plant whose long flowering period well justifies a place in the border.
‘Ministar’ is an outstanding dwarf variety of columbine from Japan. With bright blue flowers with a white corolla in late spring and stands only 20cm tall. Very hardy, it is one of the best selections for rock gardens, troughs and well-drained edges at walls or paths
Get out the dark glasses – Geranium psilostemon has the most uncompromising colour of screaming magenta! Nothing like as gaudy as you might think and it never overwhelms, the wonderful dark eye in each flower tones down the effect.
Balloon Flower, Chinese Bellflower, Japanese Bellflower
Platycodon is a very floriferous, robust, long lived perennial that produces handfuls of rich lavender-violet flowers accented with darker violet veins. Beginning at the tips of the stems, buds slowly swell into 2 inch 'balloons', which pop open into bell-shaped flowers.
Campanula Pusilla is distinguished by its production of enormous numbers of elegant, lavender-blue bell-shaped blooms. It grows horizontally with rosettes of shiny green heart shaped foliage, rarely exceeding 10cm in height. It will spread indefinitely.
Digitalis grandiflora is one of the few truly perennial foxgloves. Extremely hardy and one of the best performers. Bearing upright stalks of beautiful creamy-yellow bells through the summer, the lovely soft shade allows this plant to blend with almost anything in the garden.
Rudbeckia are one of the top ten favorites of many gardeners'. Goldsturm is a compact form of the yolk-yellow black-eyed Susan, it is short enough not to need staking and never flops. An excellent cut flower and a great choice for mass planting.
Iris chrysographes 'Black Gold' is quite simply stunning. A slender, refined and understated iris, with mesmerising velvety midnight -black petals, each veined with golden-yellow highlights at its throat.
D. spectabilis features nodding, pink heart shaped flowers which dangle enticingly from arching flower stems. Planted with other shade lovers, it can easily be the most breath-taking showstopper in the garden when in full growth.
This stunning, more rare form of Dicentra with its pure white heart shaped flowers adds charming beauty to the woodland or shade garden. It gives a real lift each spring when the delicate heart shaped wonders first appear
With silvery-grey felted leaves and lax sprays of long-stalked, vivid rose-purple flowers in late summer, Rose Campion flowers with a big showy display that maintains interest at a time when many other plants are flagging. A very useful plant in the garden.